Friday, March 13, 2015

It's the little Fit that could, and does deliver

Mark Glover’s AutoGlo reviews of the latest motor vehicle models also can be seen on The Sacramento Bee’s website at

This review originally appeared in the February 2015 edition of the Northern & Central California Cruisin’ News published out of Folsom, California – mg

Sacramento, California Folks who have been reviewing motor vehicles for a long time – and that includes this ancient motorer – aren’t usually excited at the prospect of driving a sporty subcompact.

The reasons are simple: We have been spoiled by too much horsepower, too much luxury and way too much sporty flair over the long term.

In Yoda-speak, jaded we are.

But some time behind the wheel of a 2015 Honda Fit EX-L (with a continuously variable transmission and a navigation system) scrubbed off large portions of my snobbishness and left me suitably impressed.

The fact that this loaded, lavishly appointed little Fit still came in at less than $21,000 also impressed me.

The Fit was extensively reworked inside and out for the 2015 model year, and it shows.

First things first, it looks saucy-racy-sporty just standing still.  The raked roofline skis down onto a strong grille.  The back end is appropriately chopped tight, and my Fit looked ready to take on some hot Subarus outdoors or on a dirt course in some distant sports arena.

Somehow, some way, Honda scooped out extra space inside the revised car for a roomier feel all the way around.  Seated in the cockpit chair, I had easy access to all controls.  A rearview camera in a subcompact?  Believe it, and it’s a very important safety addition.  And by the way, that’s standard equipment.

Cargo room at the back end is good, and there’s more room in the back seats in this new Fit.

Engine power from the 1.5-liter, four-cylinder now makes 130 horsepower and 114 foot-pounds of torque.  The power plant and the Fit’s small size enabled me to zip around lagging commuters like a champ.

I will tell you that the engine at full song all but screams into the cockpit.  I quickly adjusted to this.  I grunt and groan when I’m working out too.  At least I knew the engine was giving it everything.

More performance does not translate to worse gas mileage, however.  In fact, it’s even better this time around: 32 miles per gallon in the city and 38 mpg on the highway on the tested model.

I’d add the Fit to your list of cars most likely to be your secondary household ride, or the vehicle most likely to be your kid’s first new car when the time comes.

The Fit’s extensive changes are grade “A.”  This is the little Fit that could, and does deliver.

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